Games in well-established genres have to do one of two things to be successful: do everything just as well as the next racer, or, offer a unique selling point to entice players in. Super Street: Racer strikes a fine balance between the two and, whilst not reinventing the racing wheel, provides a smartly designed and engaging racing experience.
The similarities between Super Street: Racer and other racing titles are evident, but none more prominent than the Need for Speed series. With everything from traffic dodging to nitrous boosts, there are comparisons to be drawn at every turn. All that is missing are the bells and whistles of a storyline and the boys in blue on your tail. And the game feels all the better for it, focusing solely on the driving and tuning of your old banger.
Tuning the car isn’t purely for cosmetic reasons, although there is an argument to say that through the outstanding detail of each purchasable part, this would have been enough. There are many opportunities to purchase parts to enhance the performance of your car and this modifies the stats. You can really feel the difference in each part that is fitted to the car, which is not always easy to achieve in racing games.
Until the latter stages of the game’s career mode, you never go more than a few races without being reminded of the need to upgrade parts on your car. It is a shame then that by the time you make it to the final three events, there has been enough money earned to ensure your car is streets ahead of the competition. Granted the difficulty can be changed throughout, but the level of challenge should progress naturally as you reach the climax of the game.
For all the detail and importance placed on tuning your car, there is seemingly no incentive to purchase more expensive parts, as all of them have the same desired outcome, irrespective of the price paid for them. To have a part costing 300 and another costing 3,000 that both offer the same stat increase seems a little odd and definitely proves detrimental to all that the game is attempting to achieve.
Alongside superb handling and exciting race action is a varied selection of race types and a vast array of tracks. It feels excellent to hit the nitrous as you drift around a corner and, whilst there is questionable object placement on some tracks that make things frustrating, the feeling of getting into the racing groove rivals any other racer on Switch.
Completing an entire career mode with one vehicle is a unique experience and one that really works. It is a breath of fresh air, especially when compared to other racers, where a car is purchased every couple of races. That being said, the aforementioned ease with which you can upgrade the car, to a level that makes winning races comfortable, means interest can wane – something that wouldn’t necessarily happen elsewhere. To combat this, the developers offer the chance to purchase additional cars, and any money left over from one play-through can be used to upgrade another for completion of the career on a harder difficulty.
Super Street: Racer succeeds in offering something new as an arcade racer on the Switch. It could have been better polished and included online multiplayer, but it’s still a solid racing experience.
Super Street: Racer £40.49
The age-old adage that you wait ages for a bus and three come along at once is most apt. Super Street: Racer could have been lost in relative obscurity, but it offers a fresh take on racing on the Switch.